Topbike Tours - European Cycling Holiday Specialists

David Olle and Emma Colson

An Australian company, Topbike has a fully equipped European base and its own fleet of high quality hire bikes and E-bikes.

We specialise in quality cycling tours with small groups and are famous for looking after our clients.

+61 415 866 061 (mobile)
PO Box 1717 Collingwood VIC 3066 AUSTRALIA
holiday@topbike.com.au
- SINCE 1997 -

Feast of Sicily 2020
EAT-DRINK-RIDE

May 1-11 2020

The Topbike 2020 ‘Tour of Sicily’ will be 11 days (10 nights) fully supported, off the tourist route where possible, riding up to 105k (but not every day), starting and finishing in Cefalù.

We will take a 40/60 coastal/inland route, including a two night visit to the island of Lipari. We use an excellent combination of traditional restaurants and unique accommodation, in all locations. Group size will be limited to 13, with 3 staff.

2020 Tour of Sicily - Eat-Drink-Ride May 1-11 2020

2020 Tour Dates*

Tour of Sicily - 'Eat-Drink-Ride'
May 1-11 2020
Cefalù - Cefalù

With a Cefalù start and finish this year, we’ll be doing an anti-clockwise loop around Sicilia. We’ll be stopping over at the towns of Polizzi Generosa, Agrigento, Forza d’Agro, Milazzo and Lipari.  Plenty of great coffee, gelato and many other Sicilian treats to be enjoyed en route too.

2020 Tour Price: $5950 (AUD) (per person)

[Places are limited to 13 clients in total]

Rides will average 70-90k, along with >1000m vertical, per day.

11 Days/10 Nights
May 1–11 2020+ *
  • Destination

  • Tour Start / Finish

    Cefalù - Cefalù
  • Pick Up

    May 1 2020 - Pickup: Cefalù Railway Station 11.00am
  • Drop Off

    May 11 2020 - Drop off: Cefalù Railway Station, 12 noon. (drop off in Palermo also possible, after midday)
  • Cycling Fitness/Experience

    Any + E-Bikes Available
1

Friday May 1 2020: Day 1 | Cefalù

11am: Pick up at Cefalù Station, (Sicily)
Once we’ve picked everyone up at the station, we’ll transfer by car to our hotel in Cefalù. After ‘check-in’ is complete, we will have a picnic on the ‘Terrazza’ while we complete bike set up, etc. After lunch we’ll head out for a 45k ride, to spin the legs out, and ease the travel stiffness while checking all equipment.
Dinner in a local Ristorante tonight, walking distance from the hotel.

Accommodation

4 star Hotel

Dining

Local Restaurant, in the historic centre of town.

Ride: 45km loop, <1000m vertical

Terrain: One big slow climb, followed by a gentle sweeping downhill

2

Saturday May 2: Day 2 | Cefalù to Polizzi Generosa

It’s a long way to the south of the island, from where we are, and the halfway point we’ve chosen is outside Polizzi Generosa.
We’ll be riding out of Cefalu west, along the coast for 15k, before turning inland to follow the Giro route from 2008. There’s two climbs of note today, the first one lasts about 10k and peaks at under 600m, while the second one lasts 15k, and reaches 900m above sea level. It is worth noting that they both have two false peaks, before the final peak. Tonight we’ll be in a rurally located agriturismo, dining inhouse.

Accommodation

Rurally located Agriturismo

Dining

Inhouse restaurant

Ride: 65km, <1500m vertical

Terrain:Two big climbs, plus undulations, forever.

3

Sunday May 3: Day 3 | Polizzi Generosa to Agrigento

After Polizzi Generosa we have a solid inland route to Agrigento on the coast, where the road cycling world championships were held in 1994. More recently, in 2008, the Giro d’Italia finished a stage here, after starting in Cefalù. It was a very similar route to ours, although we stopped halfway.
There are ten small peaks to cover today, and as we get closer to Agrigento, the roads get bigger and wider, so stopping before Agrigento is recommended. We’ll stop for coffee in Vallelunga Pratameno, and a picnic in Mussomeli. At approx. the 77k mark we strike some busy roads, so this is where we could rack the bikes and start the transport into Agrigento.

Accommodation

B & B in central Agrigento

Dining

local restaurant, walking distance

Ride: < 105k today, < 1870m ascent

Terrain:

4

Monday May 4: Day 4 | Agrigento to Agrigento

In a historic town it is a good opportunity to stay put, allowing more time to soak up Agrigento, with a scenic loop for the riders out to the west. Our host may take anyone who’s interested on a walking tour of Agrigento, and it’s churches, if we can talk him into it.
Later in the afternoon we may find time to wander the little cobbled streets of Agrigento, or maybe head off to visit the ‘Valley of Temples’, where seven monumental Greek temples in the Doric style were constructed during the 6th and 5th centuries BC. Now excavated and partially restored, they constitute some of the largest and best-preserved ancient Greek buildings outside of Greece itself, (They are listed as a World Heritage Site).
Dinner tonight, we’ll stroll the streets to an Enoteca for a pre-dinner drink, dinner at a local ristorante.

Accommodation

B & B in central Agrigento

Dining

local restaurant, walking distance

Ride: <70km loop, <1500m vertical

Terrain: Seven small (almost) insignificant climbs.

5

Tuesday May 5: Day 5 | Agrigento to Forza d’Agro

Today we’ve got a 75k ride in front of us, so we’ll transport out of Agrigento to Delia. From here we’ll take the scenic inland route, through Sommatino, Riesi, stopping for a picnic lunch in Mazzarino before the afternoon’s final 25k into San Michele di Ganzaria. At San Michele we will rack the bikes and drive 2.5h to the coast north of Catania, in Forza d’Agro.
A second option is to ride into Forza d’Agro via Taormina with a prelude curling around the base of Etna.

Accommodation

4 star Hotel, in town centre

Dining

Hotel Ristorante

Ride: < 65km, < 1200m vertical

Terrain: Undulating parcours, all-day-long.

6

Wednesday May 6 : Day 6 | Forza d’Agro to Forza d’Agro

Savoca today, for coffee, and maybe a picnic. Rolling out the door of our hotel we’ll head immediately down to the coast, and turn left. We’ll make our way along the coast, turn left and head inland to Savoca, and Bar Vitelli, famously used as the rural bar in the original Godfather movie (where Michael met Apollonia).
After leaving Savoca we’ll continue inland return back to the coast via a winding valley road. Along the coast and back up to Forza d’Agro. Tonight we shall again dine in the hotel Ristorante.
Savoca (Sicilian: Sàvuca) is a comune (municipality) in the Province of Messina in the Italian region Sicily, located about 170 kilometres (110 mi) east of Palermo and about 30 kilometres (19 mi) southwest of Messina. The town, together with Forza d'Agrò, was the location for the scenes set in Corleone, of Francis Ford Coppola's The Godfather. Bar Vitelli in Savoca, which is still a functioning establishment, was featured in the motion picture as the place where Michael Corleone asked Apollonia's father to meet his daughter.

Accommodation

4 star Hotel

Dining

Hotel Restaurant.

Ride: 45km loop, <1000m vertical

Terrain: Two small climbs, extra k’s available if required.

7

Thursday May 7: Day 7 | Forza d’Agro to Milazzo

A mostly coastal 85k ride awaits us today, with all day to do it.
Noting that most of it made up the latter half, of a sprinters stage, back in the 2008 Giro d’Italia. Starting with a descent out of Forza d’Agro, we’ll turn left at the Messina strait and head north along the coastal road, keeping the sea to our right. Nearing the city of Messina, we’ll turn inland and take a shortcut up across the range. Going up, you can be sure it will be steep, but nothing lasts forever. And looking back behind you, you’ll be able to see Reggio Calabria, the tip of Italy’s toe, across the Strait. We’ll descend the northern side and roll on into the port town of Milazzo, passing a few roadside fruit and veg stalls along the way. Coffee stop and picnic lunch, en route, for sure.
NB: the road through Messina carries a lot of traffic, and is very busy. If this is not for you, please jump in the car, and skip it.

Accommodation

Three star Hotel, on the port

Dining

Local Restaurant

Ride: 85km, <1500m vertical

One big climb, up to 500m..

8

Friday May 8: Day 8 | Milazzo to Lipari

We’ll be up early for breakfast, before taking the 7am ferry to Lipari.
Arriving at 9, we’ll drive to our accommodation in central Lipari, check in, and start to check out Lipari town.
There is a good road on Lipari, and it makes a fine 25k loop. Now while this may not sound like much, in Topbike’s well travelled opinion, it is the best 25k loop in the world. So it'll be up to you to do as many laps as you wish, before dinner.
NB: There really is only one road on the Island, so if you do get lost, it will only be a short matter of time before you find yourself again. 500m of ascent per lap here, too.
Probably not too bad an idea to knock off by lunch time, to squeeze in a meal in town, a little exploratory walk, some time at the beach, or even a siesta!
Lipari (Sicilian: Lìpari, Latin: Lipara, Ancient Greek: Meligunis) is the largest of the Aeolian Islands in the Tyrrhenian Sea off the north coast of Sicily, and the name of the island's main town. It has a permanent population of 11,231; during the May–September tourist season, its population may reach up to 20,000.

Accommodation

Hotel in Lipari town.

Dining

Restaurant in the old port.

Ride: 25k with 500m ascent (x number of laps)

Terrain: Marvellous - 500m of ascent per lap here

9

Saturday May 9: Day 9 | Lipari to Lipari

Many, many options today. More laps of Lipari, a rest day, take a ferry to the active volcano island of Stromboli, day on the beach or by the hotel pool? Lunch overlooking the beach of Canneto, just a few kilometres from Lipari? The agony of choice. The only appointment today will be dinner time… downtown Lipari, seaside.

Accommodation

Hotel in Lipari town.

Dining

Restaurant in the old port.

Ride: 25k with 500m ascent (x number of laps)

Terrain: Marvellous - 500m of ascent per lap here

10

Sunday May 10: Day 10 | Lipari to Cefalù

Our ferry back to the mainland of Sicily departs at 6.30am (TBC), so after an early start and quick breakfast, we’ll be down to the porto and onto our ferry, for a two hour cruise back to Milazzo. Once on the mainland we’ll continue driving along the coast, maybe launching the bikes from a good café, once we’re under 105k to go, to Cefalù. As long as we keep the water to our right, we’ll run into Cefalù. Views, of the Mediterranean, all day long.
Dinner cooked inhouse, by our hosts tonight. Later we might venture out for a passegiata through the streets of Caltagirone, whilst eating gelati (served in a bun, to be a true Sicilian).
Cefalù is a city and comune in the province of Palermo, located on the northern coast of Sicily, Italy on the Tyrrhenian Sea about 70 km east from the provincial capital and 185 km west of Messina. The town, with its population of just under 15,000, is one of the major tourist attractions in the region. Despite its size, every year it attracts millions of tourists from all parts of Sicily and also, from all over Italy and Europe. In summer the population can triple, making the main streets and major roads in the country crowded. There is then a youthful atmosphere and a lively nightlife.

Accommodation

Beachside 4 star hotel in Cefalu.

Dining

Local Ristorante in the old part of town (walking distance)

Beautiful coastal ride of 70-100k, including a few minor hills.

Terrain: Coastal with stunning views of the Mediterranean...

11

Monday May 11: Day 11 | Cefalù - "Arriverderci!"

Arrivederci!.

After breakfast it's time to pack up the bikes and farewell all your mates. From Cefalù there is a train to either Palermo or Catania.
This tour includes the following:
  • 11 days, 10 nights: all breakfast, dinners and accommodation.
  • Ground transport in the Topbike air-conditioned van - back up vehicle on every ride (except the ‘Lipari loop’)
  • Airport pick up and drop off in the Topbike A/C van
  • Bars and drink supplements
  • Topbike Cycling kit
  • Topbike’s experienced guides and mechanical support.
  • Topbike poetry and great dinner conversation
  • (See Topbike Tours Inclusions)
NB: The itinerary above is to be used as a guide only, as Topbike Tours are well known for making use of all (and creating some extra) opportunities, expect that variations from the above can happen at any time.

Tour Location

Cefalù to Cefalù, Sicily

Topbike Tour of Sicily | May 1–11 2020

A Feast of Sicily or 'EAT-DRINK-RIDE'

Sicily

2020 Itinerary now available